Ontario Awaits the Launch of More Operators

Ontario’s iGaming market has already welcomed more than 20 online sportsbooks, but even more are on their way. The province expects several more operators to gain permission from iGaming Ontario to go online within its borders. Most currently, BetVictor reported that it has signed a gaming operator agreement with the regulator and it should debut this week.

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The local market officially launched operations on April 4, 2022, it has seen the launch of more than 20 sportsbooks and more than 20 websites. The reason behind the introduction of the market was for the province to keep some of the gaming revenue and reinvest it in the local economy. Thus, preventing bettors from playing on unregulated offshore websites.

BetVictor Launch is Imminent

BetVictor is expected to be the first operator from the already approved ones to debut in the local iGaming market. The Gibraltar-based online sports betting app has now signed an operator agreement with iGaming Ontario, and it is said to be going live in the province on Tuesday. The company got its operator registration to join the province back in June 2022.

Some of the other gaming operators which are expected to debut soon in the province’s new market are Pinnacle, Bet99 and Betano. All three of them have already been granted iGaming registrations from the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario. Still, they have not been able to go live in the jurisdiction due to a lack of operating agreement with iGO.

On September 12, 2022, Pinnacle informed the public of Ontario that its platform will be soon available to local and eligible residents online. Meanwhile, its B2B subsidiary Pinnacle Solution has also obtained a gaming-related supplier registration with AGCO, which allows it to launch its products to other local sportsbooks with its premium trading and risk management services.

Despite the privatization of the market, some grey-market brands are still operating in the province, which has frustrated operators who are licensed under the AGCO now. However, the regulator assured that it will not tolerate the situation much longer, as a new standard will come into effect on October 31, 2022. It will require any applicant to cease unregulated operations in the province.

First Numbers on the Market

At the end of August, iGaming Ontario published its fiscal report on the newly regulated sector, which was for the first three months of operations. According to the regulator, in that time, online operators and websites accumulated a total wagering handle of just over CA4 billion, which translates to only CA$162 million in revenue. The volume is slightly less than initially expected.

The market also saw 492,000 active player accounts in its first three months and an average monthly spend of CA$113. But this does not include wagered promotional bonuses. The hold for the quarter was 3.9%, however, has raised concerns as it is substantially below the one in other similar markets such as New York State.

Source: Zochodne, Geoff “Ontario Sports Betting: More Operators Preparing to Launch in Province’s iGaming Market”, Covers, September 23, 2022

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Yolina has followed closely the latest development on the Canadian gaming scene over the past years, monitoring the land-based, lottery, and online offerings up for grabs. The dynamic nature of the local lottery and casino fields, as well as the opportunities lying ahead of Canada fire her enthusiasm for what is to come. A sports betting enthusiast, in her spare time Yolina could be found in her natural habitat – turning the pages of biographies and catching up on the latest stand-up comedy podcasts.